The Corner

Sports

Big Plays, Big Players

Darius ‘Big Play’ Slay of the Detroit Lions, at Ford Field in Detroit in 2016 (Raj Mehta / USA TODAY Sports)

My Impromptus today begins with generals — specifically, two U.S. Army generals who are associated with South Korea. One has just left his command there; the other has just taken over. The one who has just taken over, by the way, is the son of the man after whom the tank is named — the Abrams tank, I mean.

In this column, I also discuss Saudi Arabia and other matters, grave and light. One of the graver matters is football, specifically the Michigan–Ohio State game two days ago.

Somewhere in the mix, I talk about Darius Slay — “Big Play” Slay — a cornerback for the Detroit Lions. Recently, he was marvelously candid about race, and expectations about race.

Speaking of which, I would like to add another item here in the Corner. Earlier this month, the New York Times published an obit of Ron Johnson, the great running back. He was our first black captain, by which I mean the first black captain of the University of Michigan football team. That was in 1968. Later, he played for the New York Giants.

The Times quoted Johnson as saying, “When I got to New York, the running backs were Tucker Frederickson and Ernie Koy. They were two white, big fullback-type guys. Everyone assumed that if you were black, you were fast. The Giants never really had anybody like that. So I was very, very well received when I got to New York.”

There is a world of sociology, and psychology, in all this. At any rate, Ron Johnson did my hometown of Ann Arbor proud, and New York City too, and beyond.

Most Popular

Immigration

Angela Rye Knows You’re Racist

The political philosopher Michael Oakeshott said that the “rationalist” is hopelessly lost in ideology, captivated by the world of self-contained coherence he has woven from strands of human experience. He concocts a narrative about narratives, a story about stories, and adheres to the “large outline which ... Read More
Immigration

What the Viral Border-Patrol Video Leaves Out

In an attempt to justify Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s absurd comparison of American detention facilities to Holocaust-era concentration camps, many figures within the media have shared a viral video clip of a legal hearing in which a Department of Justice attorney debates a panel of judges as to what constitutes ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Pro-Abortion Nonsense from John Irving

The novelist has put up a lot of easy targets in his New York Times op-ed. I am going to take aim at six of his points, starting with his strongest one. First: Irving asserts that abortion was legal in our country from Puritan times until the 1840s, at least before “quickening.” That’s an overstatement. ... Read More
Film & TV

Murder Mystery: An Old Comedy Genre Gets Polished Up

I  like Adam Sandler, and yet you may share the sense of trepidation I get when I see that another of his movies is out. He made some very funny manboy comedies (Billy Madison, Happy Gilmore, The Waterboy) followed by some not-so-funny manboy comedies, and when he went dark, in Reign over Me and Funny People, ... Read More